Navy-themed New Testament launched in Sydney

Published on LEUT Ryan Zerbe (author), SIG Robert Whitmore (photographer)

Topic(s): Chaplaincy

Brand new copies of the Royal Australian Navy's DPNU bible sit ready for distribution, onboard HMAS Canberra at the Garden Island Defence Precinct, 11 October 2019. (photo: SIG Robert Whitmore)
Brand new copies of the Royal Australian Navy's DPNU bible sit ready for distribution, onboard HMAS Canberra at the Garden Island Defence Precinct, 11 October 2019.

A Navy-themed edition of the New Testament has been launched aboard HMAS Canberra at Fleet Base East in Sydney, making it easy for officers and sailors of faith to take the Bible to sea.

The Navy Edition of the New Testament is provided by the Bible Society Australia to Navy at no cost, upholding a relationship between the Bible Society Australia and the Australian Defence Force that goes back to the First World War.

Chief of Navy Vice Admiral Michael Noonan and Navy’s Senior Leadership Team were on-hand for the launch alongside Chaplains from Navy, Army and Air Force.

The cover of the Navy Edition of the New Testament shares the DPNU pattern of Navy’s working dress and is designed to fit comfortably in a DPNU pocket.

It is also printed on water-resistant paper that will survive being immersed in water, making it well-suited for use in the maritime environment.

Chief of Navy, Vice Admiral Michael Noonan, AO, RAN, speaks to Senior Leadership of the Royal Australian Navy and representatives of the Bible Society Australia about the role of Chaplains in Defence at the launch of the Royal Australian Navy's new DPNU bible onboard HMAS Canberra at the Garden Island Defence Precinct, 11 October 2019.

Chief of Navy, Vice Admiral Michael Noonan, AO, RAN, speaks to Senior Leadership of the Royal Australian Navy and representatives of the Bible Society Australia about the role of Chaplains in Defence at the launch of the Royal Australian Navy's new DPNU bible onboard HMAS Canberra at the Garden Island Defence Precinct, 11 October 2019.

Vice Admiral Noonan said faith was key to personal strength for many people across Navy when facing the challenges unique to military service.

“Spiritual resilience is a key ingredient to building a resilient workforce and this edition of an ancient text is a wonderful asset,” Vice Admiral Noonan said.

“Throughout our rich history the Bible Society has been there, offering support to the women and men of the RAN. We are very thankful to the Bible Society for this production and this gift to the sailors and officers of our Navy.”

Senior Chaplain Murray Lund of Fleet Headquarters said the Navy Edition of the New Testament would give Navy people an easy-to-access option when they needed to rely on their faith away from home.

“To the young officer or sailor deployed on a ship thousands of miles from home on a ship, possibly facing homesickness or other personal challenges that come on deployment, a spiritual guide in their pocket might make all the difference in how they get through the day,” Senior Chaplain Lund said.

“The Navy Edition of the New Testament gives our people a way to call on that spiritual pillar of their lives when they might need it most.”

Copies of the Navy Edition of the New Testament will be available to Navy members at Recruit School, the Royal Australian Naval College and Australian Defence Force Academy

Copies will also be available at Chaplaincy Centres ashore and through Chaplains posted to sea.